Thursday, May 18, 2017

Marx was wrong

Not that I'm surprised.

As mentioned in my most recent newspaper column, I recently read Marx's "Wage Labour and Capital" at the suggestion of someone on Steemit. Someone who disagreed with me and thought Karl Marx had the answer I was missing.

He didn't. I had always heard he was wrong, but had never seen for myself just how wrong he was. It was ... enlightening.

When you start out from a mistaken position, then build on it, things will go awry.

Marx really didn't understand anything about economics. Economics seems to be all about human motivations. He didn't seem to understand anyone's motivation except his own. And apparently he was insane.

He was completely obsessed with social position.; with "classes" of people, and was apparently very jealous of those he considered to be of a higher class.

He didn't seem to believe intelligence was of any value. Only labor.

He believed that "price" was something you could determine the correct setting of through calculations, and then you could know who was being cheated and who was doing the cheating. Especially when calculating the "fair" price of labor.

He didn't understand that no one goes to a lot of effort- physical or mental- to only break even. The worker has to feel he gets back more than he puts in, or he won't bother to show up for work, and the business owner has to feel he gets back more than he spends and risks to go into business, or he won't build a business. That business owners will stick with a business where they can't make any money, and that employees will stay with a job that won't support them (in the absence of market-warping welfare). Even if a person comes to the conclusion that working a crappy job for less pay than he'd like is better than the alternative, he is choosing that with which he comes out ahead.

Marx seems to believe the market is a set size, never to grow.

Marx mentions innovation but then forgets about it and seems to only consider production. Manufacturing processes can be improved, but apparently not products. It's like he thinks there is only a downside for everything. No upside.

Marx was wildly simplistic while being overly complicated- an odd combination. He ignored reality while making up his own economic version of epicycles. He was looking for (and imagined he could see) the laws that determined prices and the proper proportions of wage to profit. He believed the price of everything-- except labor-- is locked together and moves in step. Apparently in his mind, the price of X can't go up unless the price of everything else also goes up-- again, except wages which always go down. He believed profits could only increase when wages decreased proportionally.

And there was so much more I could go into, showing way after way he wasn't only wrong, but devastatingly so. But why bother?

His was a childish philosophy of jealousy and anger, build on delusions and wishful thinking. It's no wonder modern statists tend to be such bitter, controlling people.

Still, I have no problem at all with state-free communist (or "Marxist") enclaves. just as long as they are voluntary, don't prey on those outside the community, and allow people to opt out. They'll fail fast enough that I won't have to worry about them, unless they find a way to cheat. In which case self defense would be in order.


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  1. Libertarianism, free markets, is THE correct answer to social organization.

    All others are simply incorrect.

    1. Yep. It sounds arrogant to say, but it's just the plain truth.

  2. You could say it much more simply: Marxism is rooted in envy.

    All else follows.

  3. He didn't seem to understand anyone's motivation except his own. And apparently he was insane. Thanks Kent, I blew tea out my nose! Very succinctly put.

  4. Marxism, communism, and socialism are all rooted in envy, greed, larceny, and sloth.